Is the Word your treasure?

Pr. 2:1:  “My son, if you receive my words, and treasure my commands within you…”

We just got home from a 6-day visit with our family in WV.  Last Wednesday, about 30 minutes up the interstate, I realized I had forgotten my Bible.  No!!!!!!!!  As the realization set in, I felt like I was missing an appendage.  I knew my in-laws had many Bibles at their house, and my husband assured me I could use his, as well, but that didn’t ease the disappointment in my heart.  My Bible is a part of me.

While the other Bibles still contain the Word of God, they can not replace the relationship I have with my personal Bible.  I have wept over, agonized over, and sought the will of God through my personal Bible.  I have diligently studied and voraciously turned the pages, trying to find more of God in my personal Bible.  The Lord has spoken to me, counseled me, rebuked me, and guided me through my own Bible.  I know exactly where to find scriptures in my own Bible, even without the exact scripture reference, because I’ve been in it so much that I know on what part of the page the scripture is typed.

I have poured myself into my Bible, and the Lord has poured into me.  I treasure the words in my Bible like nothing else.  Knowing I would be without it for 6 days truly felt like an eternity.

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Is this how you feel about the Word of God?  Maybe you’re not like me, needing 1 specific Bible to hear the Word of God. (like a baby with their pacifier.  haha)  But is the Word of God your treasure?  Do you need the Word so much that allowing a day to go by leaves you disappointed?  Does the thought of missing 2 days in God’s word leave you knowing that you’d be missing out on the most important thing in your life?

The Word of God is a critical component of our relationship with God.  We speak to God through prayer, and He can speak to us and to our hearts through His Holy Spirit.  We also need to hear His voice through the Word which He has provided.  The Word is vital, which is why it referred to as the sword in the set of armor we are encouraged to put on each day.  The Lord breathed life into His Word, and when we burrow in, consider, and explore it, He breathes life into us.

Pulling my Bible off the shelf this morning brought a rush of exhilaration to me this morning.  My Bible!  I was so joyful as I unzipped the cover and opened the pages.  I hope the same joy finds you today as you read and consider the Word.

Complete,

jamie

 

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Which way to heaven?

Pr. 2:13:  “From those who leave the paths of uprightness to walk in the ways of darkness;”

We just spent the weekend deep in the mountains of West Virginia.  My family is blessed to have some land where we can reunite and unwind.  A few years ago some of my cousins made a new trail in the woods up on the mountain behind our house to mark the property line.  The trail they cut out is wide enough for a 4-wheeler or my cousin Mark’s off-road vehicle called ‘the mule.’

All the kids love to ride on Mark’s mule, and they made several trips on that trail over the weekend.  My dad was taking the kids for one of the rides and I joined them.  This was my first time on the trail and I saw there were some smaller paths leading off to the side.  I noted that my dad always took the path to the right and he confirmed that the main trail went to the right.  He said the smaller paths were dead ends that were made for other purposes.

This verse reminds me of that trail and those other paths.  If you got on that main trail for the first time and didn’t know which way to head, you could easily wind up on the wrong path.  Instead of an hour long walk down a path that’s been laid out, you could wind up hitting every dead-end there is, and spend several hours just trying to find where the trail lets out.  (View of trail’s exit below)

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Almost Heaven, West Virginia

The Lord has a path clearly laid out for us all, and you can find the directions in the Word.  Without knowing or heeding the Word, we often try to take those paths off the main trail, but they are dead ends that only lead to darkness, sin, pain, and ultimately death.  We don’t have to create new paths or take the paths towards darkness.  Keeping the word in our hearts, we can stay on the path of uprightness, which leads to eternal life.

Stay on the path today and do not let yourself be lured by the paths of darkness.  Those smaller paths will ensnare you, trap you, and will not let out in heaven.  Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life.  No one comes to the Father except through Me.”  If you need to know the way, His name is Jesus.  He was in the beginning with God:  “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.”  If you know the Word, you know Jesus, and you will get to the Father through Him.”  (John 1:1)  Continue to the right.  Heaven awaits!

Trusting in Jesus,

jamie

 

Storehouse of sound wisdom

Pr. 2:7:  “He stores up sound wisdom for the upright; He is a shield to those who walk uprightly”

For the upright, the Lord has sound wisdom stored up.  Isn’t that reassuring?  Wisdom is stored up and ready for us to tap into it.  Ps. 94:12 tells us that, “Blessed is the man whom You instruct, O Lord, and teach out of Your law, that you may give him rest from the days of adversity, until the pit is dug for the wicked.”  If we are instructed by the Lord, and not the world, we will have rest from the days of adversity, and not be in the pit of the wicked.

And when we walk in the Lord’s wisdom, honor, and holiness, not only will we stay out of the pit, but He will be a shield to us.  Ps. 84:11 says, “For the Lord God is a sun and shield; the Lord will give grace and glory; no good thing will He withhold from those who walk uprightly.”  1 Sam. 2:9 tells us, “He will guard the feet of His saints, but the wicked shall be silent in darkness.”  He instructs us, is a shield to us, and guards our feet.  He will give grace and glory.

If we choose to walk with the Lord, to learn from Him, and to honor Him with our lives, He will keep us from the pit of darkness.  His wisdom will guide our thoughts, actions, and choices.  We will make choices that bring Him honor and glory and those choices will give us rest.  His protection will keep us safe from the consequences of wicked choices.

Receive instruction from the Lord through His Word.  Allow the Lord to be the One who teaches and instructs you.  That’s what I am desiring to do.  If I am instructed out of His law I will be blessed.  For the answers to my questions and the directions for my life, I will seek out the instructions of the Lord.  He is the One who will guard our feet, direct our paths, shield us, give us grace and glory, withhold no good thing from us, give to us out of the abundance of the wisdom He has stored up for us, and give us rest.

From what other source would we truly desire to receive knowledge?  No other source can offer us those things, and eternal life.  The Lord loves us and cares for us.  He created us with a future in mind.  He will help us along the path.  He will hold us up, protect us, and guide us.  Let’s make the decision to turn to Him for the answers we need.  His wisdom is better than any book or expert on this earth.

Shielded,

jamie

 

How to fight the giants

Pr. 2:10-11:  “When wisdom enters your heart, and knowledge is pleasant to your soul, discretion will preserve you; understanding will keep you.” 

How do we get wisdom to enter our heart?  How does knowledge become pleasant our souls?  We read and meditate on the Word of God.  We spend time with our Lord in prayer.  We allow the sweet Holy Spirit to guide us and speak the deep things of God to us throughout our day.  If we simply spend time with God, His word will bore into our minds, hearts, and souls and discretion, wisdom, understanding, and knowledge will naturally come.

What I have found is that the more I have of God, the more I want.  The more I stay in His presence, the more I long for His presence in my life.  The more I allow His will to guide my decisions, the more I want His advice.  This is how knowledge becomes pleasant to our souls.

I remember reading how David longed for God, and for God’s presence.  David danced before the Lord with all of his might.  His trust was only in the Lord and He called out to the Lord when He needed anything.  He praised the Lord with harp, song, and word.  He meditated on the scriptures and made them a lamp unto his feet and a light unto his path.  The Lord was the first thing on his mind when he awoke.  The Psalms are full of David’s heart being poured out before the Lord.  This is what happens when we truly get into His presence on a regular basis.  David sought the Lord, and the Lord showed Himself to David and protected Him.

David made mistakes, but God still called him a man after His own heart, because David truly loved and longed for God.  He wasn’t a perfect person, but His Savior was perfect beyond measure and David counted on the Lord to guide and keep Him.  David understood that he had no strength but God.

Ps. 93:4 says, “The Lord on high is mightier than the noise of many waters, than the mighty waves of the sea.”  I’m not sure who wrote this Psalm, but I know that David knew this to be true.  Without the Lord, David was just a boy facing a giant that could not be defeated.  David, however, understood that the battle was the Lord’s and that he was simply the instrument the Lord was using to defeat the giant and bring glory to God.

When this kind of wisdom enters our heart, truly we will live in safety.  We understand that life is not about us, our weaknesses, or our strengths.  Knowledge of the Holy One will give us the pleasant truth that God is truly in control.  God will fight our giants.

We only get this knowledge in His presence.  David spent time with God, even time on his face worshiping the Lord who is mightier than the waves of the sea.  His life is a good example for us of how we should live our lives.  He’s not the only one allowed to live this way.  Let’s take a few notes from David today and allow the Lord to opportunity to preserve and keep us.

“Therefore I will play music before the Lord.  And I will be even more undignified than this, and will be humble in my own sight.”  -David, 2 Sam. 6:21-22

jamie

Watch your step!

Pr. 2:20 “So you may walk in the way of goodness, and keep to the paths of righteousness.”

We are encouraged to walk on paths of righteousness.  Have you ever thought about where that path ends?  The next verse tells us that we will one day present ourselves to God.

Ro. 6:12-13:  “Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body, that you should obey it in its lusts.  And do not present your members as instruments of unrighteousness to sin, but present yourselves to God as being alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God.”

We all sin, but Paul reminds us that sin should not have dominance in our lives.  We should not blindly follow and obey our lusts.

We present ourselves before our living God.  Does that fact make you want to change anything about your life?  Jesus made us His righteousness when He took our sins.  We are called to be instruments of that righteousness.

Not only will our path lead to the Lord, but while we’re on that path our lives are being examined.  Our children are learning how to live by watching us.  Our family is taking notes as we walk along.  Our friends are looking for hope.  Our acquaintances are watching for discrepancies.

Let’s make sure that goodness is before us on the path before we step.  If you see a dark spot on the road before you, don’t step there.  Look for the light beside it.  The Lord always offers us a way around the darkness!  Keep to the paths of your Savior and you will present yourself a living sacrifice to your Father and to Jesus Christ who laid down His life for us all.

The path of righteousness doesn’t buy our way into heaven.  The only way is through Jesus.  However, the path of righteousness will be a witness of our love for Christ and will help us point others to Him.

Walking toward the light,

jamie